Fancy fish and chips tonight? As you unwrap your supper, no doubt you’ll be tucking into cod, salmon or haddock.
But have you considered dab? Or even megrim?
While these fish varieties may not be on the menu yet at your local chippie, experts believe they should be.
The Marine Conservation Society has updated its Good Fish Guide, suggesting the best fish to eat both in terms of sustainability and boosting the UK fishing industry.
The Marine Conservation Society has updated its Good Fish Guide, suggesting the best fish to eat both in terms of sustainability and boosting the UK fishing industry (file image of dab)
The group says choosing from a wider range of fish and broadening our tastes would take pressure off individual fishing grounds and encourage demand for the most sustainable and local seafood.
While it acknowledges that most of us favour familiar names such as cod, salmon, haddock, tuna and prawns, it has suggested an alternative ‘best choice’ top ten we might like to try.
The list includes dab caught in the North Sea, hake from Cornwall and herring from the Irish, Celtic and North Seas, south west Ireland and English Channel.
As well as the hake and herring – both certified by the Marine Stewardship Council – some types of sustainably caught mackerel, UK rope-grown mussels and megrim are also on the list.
Megrim is a deepwater flatfish from the same family as turbot and brill. It is joined on the list by Devon brown crab, queen scallops, pollack and Dover sole.
The list includes dab caught in the North Sea, hake from Cornwall and herring from the Irish, Celtic and North Seas, south west Ireland and English Channel
Bernadette Clarke, MCS Good Fish Guide programme manager, said: ‘Although they may not trip off the tongue like cod, mackerel and plaice, these could, and should be, the fish supper of the future.
‘UK consumers tend to stick to their tried and tested top five – both in taste and familiarity but not always sustainability. Cod, tuna, salmon, haddock and prawns, from the right sources are all ok, but there’s so much more to explore and the additions to the best choice list are a good place to start.
‘We are currently exporting around 75 per cent of fish caught and landed in the UK, but we’re the ninth largest importer of fish in the world. By choosing more sustainable sources and keeping it local it will help reduce wasting wild caught fish that are discarded dead because they have less value.
‘By choosing from a wider range we’ll put far less stress on individual fisheries.’